Thursday, July 28, 2011

City Fun

I broke my hermit streak this week by going out tonight for one of CitySwarm's patio series at the Crossing. My friend Courtney and I both enjoy putting sweats on right after work, overeating and watching television. It's not a glamorous life, but it's the life I live when I can. I reserved Monday and Tuesday this week as days to caught up on life--edit wedding photos and nap and I spiced up Wednesday by meeting a slew of new people and drinking Summer Shandies out on a bar patio, thanks to CitySwarm's invitation. I need to start registering for more events and experience the city of Chicago. I enjoy organized events where I don't have to do the planning and organizing, it's really the best way to get my butt out there to meet people and see new places.
[white bustier and maxi dress by f21, thrifted belt, shoes c/o blowfish, bag by badgley mischka, accessories from kie&kate]
I wore this maxi dress when I first moved to Chicago and you can see it here. This time, I wore the dress as a skirt and added a white bustier and heels, the perfect outfit for a couple drinks and to meet new people on a hot day.
My fabulous friend Courtney wearing a dress by H&M and heels by Jessica Simpson.
The ladies of CitySwarm! Grace, Lindsay (the founder), Emily
P.S. to see more photos, check out my guest post over at Sartoriography
Aaaand, happy birthday, mommy!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Lake Michigan

I made the journey back to Michigan and had an eventful weekend. From photographing wedding photos on Ludington's beach to family photos in Muskegon to boating in Grand Haven, Lake Michigan and I were inseparable. 
I photographed one of my high school friend's wedding, which turned out to be not only somewhat of a class reunion, but a whole community celebration. These kinds of weddings are my favorite because no one has any inhibitions, which allows me to document some pretty exciting and perhaps, potentially embarrassing photos of people I know. 
[olsenboye dress, hair piece and bracelets c/o jcpenney, wedges c/o wanted, sunglasses by banana republic]
When JcPenney asked me to pick out an outfit to style, I gravitated toward this Olsenboye dress. It's so light and comfortable and the perfect bohemian look to wear by the lake. And for family photos. The family gathered yesterday afternoon to take new family photos to replace the ones we last took when I was in fourth grade, before my little brother, Dylan, was born and when my stepdad shamelessly rocked a bold mullet hairstyle. Needless to say, it was time for an update.
Mom and me! 

Friday, July 22, 2011

$30 Gift Card Giveaway to Vertebrae!

I'm excited to share a great giveaway! One of my readers will win a $30 gift card code to Vertebrae, a Chicago-based handmade label, which incorporates a mix of vintage and contemporary fabrics and pretty silhouettes. 
Want to enter? All you have to do is visit the Vertebrae etsy page and comment with your email address for me to contact you. For a second entry, like the Vertebrae Facebook fan page. Giveaway is open worldwide and ends Monday, August 1 at 9:00 p.m. CST.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Out With the Girls!

 One of my favorite things about living in Chicago is the combination of the great network of bloggers and blogger friends I've made. I love that on a random Wednesday, a group of us can get together for shopping and cocktails. To outsiders, they might guess we've been friends our whole life when we really haven't known each other that long. The blogger friendship is a bond that can never be broken. Hehe.
Yesterday, I met Sandy of edie and andy and then also met up with Anna of See Jane and Lisa of Archives Vintage. We stopped by Lori's Shoes before visiting a new boutique, Comfort Me. Alyssa, one of the owners, used to work at Band Digital where I now work and I was told I must check out her new boutique, which all of you should as well! It's decorated beautifully and she has such a great eye--I'm pining after so many pieces I saw! Because of the heat and my subsequent tiredness, I didn't try anything on, which means I need to get my ass back there stat! And so do you, Chicago friends!
This skirt had trouble written all over it. Yet again, wind blew it up and exposed my underwear for everyone to see. I paired the skirt with a polka dot bustier. The outfit was light and airy, almost perfect for the weather besides the light wind. 
[skirt by american apparel, bustier from uo, shoes c/o wanted, bag by badgley mischka, sunglasses by rayban]
Comfort Me Boutique
The girls!
Gotta love Sandy, so gorgeous and funny!
Anna in an outfit I wanted to steal
Lisa has the best hair. And I'm pretty sure she's sweatproof. I was dripping in sweat while she pranced around, sweat-free for photos!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Milwaukee River

This weekend I spent a lot of time on or near the Milwaukee River in downtown Milwaukee partaking in my favorite activities: drinking on a boat and eating at restaurants along the river. Friday night's weather was spectacular and I enjoyed a cruise with my boyfriend for one of his company's outings. Yet, Sunday was a different story. My dreams of sitting outside, relaxing and eating food near the river turned into me sweating profusely and refusing food at our first stop due to the level of heat and humidity. And second stop, we chose to just eat indoors where the air conditioning was cranked up. I shake my fist at you, Mother Nature! I'm a little dramatic, I know. Ok, maybe a lot.
My Vertebrae sent me these pieces and I styled them together--I love the muted colors and the fabric. I'd normally style this top with cut off shorts, which may have been more appropriate considering the hot weather, but since when do I dress weather appropriate? The heat made me so crabby, I could hardly pull myself together for these photos. Anyone else have days like that? I just couldn't make myself look normal for a photo. 
[top and skirt by my vertebrae, shoes from dsw, bag my marc jacobs]

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

See Jane..and Andrea

This was a fun, comfy outfit I wore to work yesterday and to dinner with Anna of See Jane, a fabulous Chicago style blogger. We've been trying for months to meet up and finally, the stars aligned and we were able to meet up and grab pizza at my roommate's restaurant, Big Stuff. I already knew she would be super cool because, you know, I stalk her blog, but we had so much in common! We both grew up showing horses and are a bit messy. Which is why you never see me take cute pictures of my apartment or pretty things around it. Those things just don't exist. You're more likely to see photos of shoes laying about and little tumbleweeds of my hair along the floor.
In other news, I've recently learned knee length, light, flowy skirts are out of the question with my walking commute to work. With the winds and not to mention sidewalk vents, I've experienced the embarrassment of flashing dozens of people to and from work on Monday. I also learned yesterday whilst wearing this shirt that walking over a sidewalk vent with a loose, billowy tee will also result in embarrassment because people will inevitably see my bra. It's been a rough couple days for me and my exposed undergarments.
[top from uo, shorts by h&m, hat by ninewest,  shoes by jeffrey campbell, leather bracelet by tea accessories, bag by marc jacobs]
And the gorgeous Anna! Be sure to check out her blog, See Jane if you haven't already!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Polka Dots & Gold

Zoo animals, Michigan friends, cheeseburgers, cupcakes and tacos describe this past weekend, which may be the best way someone could describe an ideal weekend for me. Don visited from Milwaukee and we made trips to new restaurants, bars and did a couple touristy things, including the zoo. Knowing Don and my friend Jessica from Michigan would be in town, I made a bigger effort to make plans and explore the city. Sometimes, I need the visits of friends from outside the city to light a fire under my butt to have fun.
I'm actually wearing this today after work to grab dinner with friends and wearing something similar to this to work, but substitute in a work appropriate skirt. I usually dress these shorts down, but this time I wanted to mix patterns and dress it up a bit with a lot of gold accessories. 
[top by ezra from pitaya, shorts by silence and noise, wedges by aldo, sunglasses by rayban, bag by marc jacobs, necklace from kie&kate]

Friday, July 8, 2011

Back to Blonde

I skipped along to work and dinner with friends yesterday in this outfit. I'm feeling especially feminine and cutesy now that my hair is blonde again and I'm wearing a frilly outfit. I went to the salon on Wednesday, asked to keep the strawberry blonde and somehow leaving with it looking close to what it looked like before I dyed it red. I'm just not sure what to do with it anymore! I struggle with a slew of first world problems.
Back in May when I visited the Randolph Street Market, I visited the Dethrose Vintage booth again. I love Karyn's stuff and beelined it for this mint top as if everyone else planned to scoop it up. Since I hardly wear tops like this, it took me a while to style, but I loved how the outfit came together.
[vintage top from dethrose vintage, skirt from anthropologie, thrifted belt, oxfords from dsw, sunglasses by banana republic]
The light was so great in the city yesterday evening and I'm still so enamored by Chicago's downtown. I see the same views of the buildings and clusters of people, but they always excite me. Working downtown has been so much fun so far too. I step outside to restaurants and can meet up with friends who work nearby in a minute or less. I've spent a couple days this week eating in the park. Soon enough, I'll make sure to take photos of my building and inside our office at Band Digital. It's pretty much the coolest place ever where I feel challenged, have countless hip and fun people to chat up and at the end of every week we can look forward to Beercart Fridays, because retrieving a beer from the refrigerator just isn't the same as having a beercart going around the office.  I'm hoping to enjoy a beer at work today myself. Hope everyone has a fabulous weekend!
Photos by Becky Johns